We’ve sounded the office horn! It’s been over one month since the Open Banking Managed Roll Out was launched and we’re celebrating moving into the third and final stage.
During the first month of managed roll out, we interviewed our CEO Olly Betts, to get his thoughts on Open Banking, what the future looks like for OpenWrks, our current role in the managed roll out and how we are going to remove barriers to the financial services that people need the most.
The names and numbers so far [Infographic]
Before we get into the technical detail, here’s everything we’ve polished off in the first month…
What is the Open Banking managed roll out exactly?
Managed Rollout is a programme led by the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) to support the smooth launch of the ecosystem into the wider financial services industry. It is being run with the 9 largest UK retail banks (Barclays, Lloyds, HSBC, Santander, The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), Nationwide, Allied Irish Bank, The Bank of Ireland, Danske Bank) otherwise known as the CMA9, and a select group of FCA regulated and authorised third party providers (TPP) of which OpenWrks is one.
Why is the Open Banking managed roll out happening?
The managed rollout is a three-phase plan, aiming to limit the number of API calls any single TPP can make to the participating Banks per day. This allows the Banks to conduct functional testing of their APIs, giving them the opportunity to ‘buddy’ closely with authorised and regulated TPPs.
It also gives the Banks a chance to fix any issues that might arise before the APIs are released to the wider market, ensuring that they’re robust and scalable enough to handle larger numbers of calls from TPPs.
What are the phases of the Open Banking managed roll out?
The managed roll out consists of three phases:
1. Phase one – ‘Functional Validation’
Phase one has seen the initial cohort of Banks validate their onboarding, end to end consent flows and retrieval of data via their APIs with participating, authorised and regulated third-parties. This helps the Banks ensure that their APIs conform to Open Banking standards and are ready to be consumed in production environments. The testing in this phase is based on production reference accounts and also staff accounts from the Banks.
2. Phase two – ‘TPP Staff Validation’
Phase two continues testing but now with the additional connection and validation of staff bank accounts from the TPPs. This means that the team at OpenWrks can connect their own bank accounts and see their own transactions delivered through the Banks APIs.
We start to get a clearer view of how ‘real’ bank account information will be received through each Banks API and highlight any discrepancies with the way data is presented from these real-life transaction types.
During phase two, the amount of ‘positive consents’, which is defined as a successful initiation and authorisation of a TPP to a bank account, is restricted to 100 per day, per TPP.
3. Phase three – ‘TPP Customer Validation’
Phase three is where the action ramps up!
During phase three, the number of ‘positive consents’ will be extended to 1,000 per day, per TPP. But only once the OBIE and the Banks themselves, are happy that the APIs are to a high standard and can withstand large amounts of activity.
The exciting part of this phase is that participating TPPs will be able to start taking their customers through the consent journey so they can connect their bank accounts to real products and services.
Throughout these 3 phases, the pool of Banks and TPPs has and will continue to steadily grow, as more Banks become ready to test functionality and additional TPPs have become FCA regulated and authorised, ready to join the programme.
What's in store for OpenWrks is phase 3?
Moving into the third phase of the managed roll out we’re continuing to work with the OBIE and will begin working with remaining Banks to prove a connection to their end points and test their APIs.
We will also begin increasing the number of ‘positive consents’ we run per day, in line with the 1,000 per day limit and testing with more of our internal staff bank accounts, alongside some of our customers.
We’re also hopeful that we will be able to give the go-ahead for some of our clients to use our OpenWrks API to connect to ALL of the Banks through us, however, we will only ever make a bank available when we’re 100% satisfied that their systems are to a high standard and robust enough to manage large amounts of activity.